Phillips Consulting Calls for Joint Action against Cancer in Nigeria

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Peter Uzoho

Following its study in 2018, on the socioeconomic impact of cancer, which revealed alarming burden on the victims, the caregivers and the country at large, Phillips Consulting Limited has called for a combined effort of all stakeholders in order to tackle the scourge in the country.

It challenged health professionals, government, non-governmental organisations, researchers of all stripes and other interested corporate bodies to urgently provide the basis for effective actions against Cancer, stressing that the task of beating cancer requires the combined efforts of all stakeholders.

The research organisation said the study whose responses were gathered from thousands of Nigerian cancer victims, caregivers, family and friends, showed that the diseases has plunged many caregivers into soliciting alms from the public for the treatment of the patients.

According to the report, several health management organisations in Nigeria do not cover Cancer treatments even as the Nigerian National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) don’t.

The report further revealed that the cost of cancer treatments in Nigeria ranges from N850, 000 ($2,361) and $10, 000 (N3, 600,000), and that due to the inability of the masses to afford these costs, the number of people resorting to public intervention has constantly increased over the years.

This, it noted, is an intuitive evidence of the great socioeconomic burden faced by cancer patients and their caregivers.

Highlighting further findings of the report, the Managing Consultant, Phillips Consulting, Mr. Victor Mbah said every year, tens and thousands of Nigerians trooped abroad in search of the best and most affordable medical treatments and health care services.

Mba said: “Destinations such as The Middle East, India, Turkey, United States of America and Europe thrive on Nigerian medical tourists. Cancer patients spend astronomical amounts of money seeking treatment abroad, up to $60,000, excluding other associated financial costs such as visa fees, flight tickets, logistics, hotel accommodation and upkeep for the patient and their caregiver.

“The high amount of capital flight suggests opportunities for

investment along the value chain of cancer management in Nigeria. The

PCL survey showed that Nigerian women and low-income earners were the

most affected by cancer, but irrespective of one’s socioeconomic

status, the emotional and financial burden of fighting cancer is

excruciating.

“We will not only direct our significant research capabilities towards

plotting the way forward; we are also prepared to support stakeholders

in ensuring the effectiveness of cancer management through the

effective project management of palliative programs and initiatives.”